So by now you have probably heard of this Ron Howard/Brian Grazer movie? If it comes to a movie theatre near you GO! Rolling Stone as expected covers it best.
I just watched the movie and have an even greater appreciation for the Beatles than before. First let me say I was 3-8 years old when they were at their peak. But after watching the movie, I walked away understanding how they worked as musicians, people and a collective.
This movie is most amazing because Ron Howard has remastered hundreds of hours of film footage and photographs someone was smart enough to record and save. We get to see and hear the Beatles perform – not just talk about it. And there are narratives from Malcolm Gladwell, Whoopi Goldberg, roadies, reporters who covered the tour and the remaining Beatles. It is wonderful seeing John Lennon perform.
Yes we all know, Liverpool kids who done good. But throughout their rise, they kept their values and roots in tact. Any decision required a unanimous vote. They cared about each other and the people around them. In Birmingham Alabama in the 60’s they refused to play to a segregated audience. When they stopped touring, shortly after the Shea Stadium concert to 56,000 people – the first concert in a stadium ever – it was because the concert mayhem overshadowed the music. They couldn’t hear each other let alone the music and knew the audience couldn’t either. This concert was broadcast through the Shea Stadium speaker system – Vox had create a 100 watt speaker for the concert – nothing bigger existed. It was a shambles of a production and they escaped in a Loomis armoured truck careening around in the back. That was it, they’d had enough.
The Beatles were a tight band of brothers. You can see it early in their performances in small Liverpool venues. Watching the movie you can see, they all moved together, shoulders, feet, heads. So in tune with the music and fully present. They’re smiling, cheeky, irreverent enjoying the moment.This continued until around ’67, when the touring became really hard – 25 cities in North America in 30 days. Within increasingly crazy crowds from the moment they landed to concerts and hotels. They made no money from records – so the touring was, after a while a necessary evil.
But they loved their time in the studio. Creating and recording a new single every two months and new album every six! Can you imagine – well you don’t have to because their repertoire of music lives on. For the most part John and Paul wrote all the lyrics and music – anytime anywhere. They were connected through the loss of their Mother’s early in their lives and love of music. George learned from them and also contributed. But, according to Paul, their work in the studio had schedule and focused their work giving us the body of music we enjoy today.
In case you didn’t know, cause I didn’t, these stats exist in 2016 from a band that has not produced a song or album since 1969!
- 20 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 #1 singles since 1958 (#2 Mariah Carey has 18)
- Highest certified music artist in the United States – 178M units (#2 Garth Brooks has 138M)
- Best selling band in history 269M certified units – 600M-1B worldwide in claimed units (#2 Elvis Presley 210M CU)
- John and Paul wrote more than 180 songs together